Snow plow drivers preparing for winter

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WALWORTH, N.Y. (WHEC) — As the days get shorter and the temperature gets colder, one highway superintendent is hoping to add to his team of snow plow drivers.

"I’ve had an ad in the paper now for help for a month, and I haven’t received one single application," said Tim Vendal, highway superintendent for the Town of Walworth.

Vendel, who oversees a team of eight drivers, is already down one employee going into the winter season. And, with the town adding additional routes for a newly-developed subdivision, the superintendent is going to need yet another driver.

"At this point I’m a little bit worried about it. I do anticipate that we’re going to have some problems," he said.

Vendel partly blames the lack of interest in the job on new regulations and requirements it takes to obtain a commercial driver’s license, the grueling winter hours and of course, the elephant in the room.

"I think the one thing that’s stressing me out the most is COVID. You never know from one day to the next whether you’re going to have someone out with COVID, or you’re going to have someone quarantined because of COVID so that takes away a driver," Vendel said.

As for the New York State Department of Transportation, News10NBC’s Jenny Ly reached out about those wanted signs advertising for drivers and got a brief statement:

"At the Department of Transportation, we are deep into annual preparations for snow and ice season and that includes strengthening our staffing numbers. NYSDOT is obviously not the only organization looking to hire workers right now in this challenging job market, but we will have the necessary staff and resources to fulfill our mission this winter. DOT maintenance staff are a vital part of operations, and those individuals keep New Yorkers on the move, no matter the weather. "

Irondequoit says they are not facing any issues and the same goes for Penfield. We also tried to reach out to the Town of Greece and Webster to find out but have not yet heard back.